tv The Rachel Maddow Show MSNBC April 29, 2010 9:00pm-10:00pm EDT
respond and to face some questions. at length. plus, a scoop about ken cooccinelli, he said it was cost virginia $350 has turned out to be a fundraising ploy. we have the evidence. and we have the evidence that vladimir putin fears nothing, as long as anything scary is drugged and blow dried to look pretty before he has to face it. "the rachel maddow show" starts right now. ready or not, here it might be. turns out they're going for immigration reform. yeah. the long-awaited yet largely unexpected fight to reform federal immigration policy is as of today unexpectedly upon us.
the tick-tock of what led up to this is head spinning. last night president obama told reporters on air force one that congress probably lacked the, quote, appetite to take on immigration this election year. that comment from the president led to the broadly understood truth expressed by this completely conclusive associated press headline. it's not going to happen. immigration reform off the agenda, so says obama. this morning house minority leader john boehner, quote, there is not a chance that immigration is going to move through the congress. not a chance. not long after mr. boehner took up residence on that particular limb, senator majority leader harry reid got all, oh, yeah? on the subject. senator reid called boehner's bluff and introduced what he called a framework for overhauling u.s. immigration laws. it spells out tougher border
security, i.d. cards for workers, tough sanctions on employers who hire people who are in this country illegally, and eventually a path to citizenship for those who are currently here illegally. neat. it's neat, that he introduced it. that's what they want to do. we've got a framework. but didn't the president just last night say on his giant airplane full of reporters that immigration was off the agenda? yeah, he did say that. at least that's what everybody thought he said. tonight it all changed. the president put out a statement that says, quote, the proposal outlined today in the senate is a very important step in the process of fixing our nation's broken immigration system. what has become increasingly clear is that we can no longer wait to fix our broken immigration system. which democrats and republicans alike agree doesn't work. the president saying we can no longer wait. well, okay, then. as unlikely as it looked at sunrise today, the democratic leadership is right now on
pretty of the same page about immigration. on the other side of the aisle, however, republicans are not only not on the same page, they're not even in the same book. as the country prepares now for a new huge political fight over a critical issue, the republican party has a giant crack running right down the middle of it. arizona's papers please law was signed last week. while that can be seen as an impressive accomplishment for the right wing of the republican party in that state flexing its legislative muscles, it also really puts the rest of the republican party in the country on the spot. suddenly everyone in the party is expected to go on record now and say what they think about arizona's way out there anti-immigration law. and while the people on the far right of the party who like that law may be kpilted about that, it is not a recipe for party unity. take for example tea party favorite marco rubio, the guy who just forced charlie crist out of the republican party for being too moderate. marco rubio released a statement about the arizona papers please
law, which said in part, quote, i think aspects of the law, especially that dealing with reasonable suspicion, are going to put our law enforcement officers in an incredibly difficult position. it could also unreasonably single out people here legally, including many american citizens. so the single most recognizable candidate associated with the tea party movement nationwide has just come out against the papers please law. will all of his supporters in the tea party movement also be speaking out about this law now? you know, those people talking about too much government intrusion in our lives? if they were really for smaller government, you'd think they'd line up beside rubio about any law, demanding to see papers, a law that presumes you're illegal unless you can prove otherwise. talk about big government. boy. so far, not a peep from the tea
partiers, which is how you get caught for saying what you believe, when something you're concerned about, too much government, and you say nothing? starts to look like maybe your movement is less about your stated principles and more about something else. but the arizona papers please law is doing more than showcasing the shaky principles of the tea party movement. it is starting up a real ideological civil war among leaders and elected officials in the republican party. as more high profile republicans are called on to comment on the arizona law, it just keeps becoming more and more clear how much disagreement there is about it in the republican party. former florida governor jeb bush said, quote, i think it creates unintended consequences. it places a significant burden on local law enforcement and you have civil liberties issues that are significant as well. even after trying to come up with an argument for how it wouldn't necessarily have to be implemented in a totally racist
way, karl rove admitted, quote, i think there's going to be some constitutional problems with the bill. i wish they hadn't passed it, in a way. republican senator lindsey graham also seeing a constitutional problem, he says, with the papers please law. >> what happened in arizona is that good people are so afraid of an out of control border that they had to resort to a law that i think is unconstitutional. >> republican congressman connie mac totally and completely denounced the law. he issued a statement that said, quote, this law of frontier justice where law enforcement officials are required to stop anyone based on a reasonable suspicion that they may be in the country illegally is reminiscent of a time during world war ii when the guess tap poe in germany stopped people for papers. it should not be against the law to not have proof of citizenship on you.
it's not the america i want my children to grow up in. for the record, i am not making a nazi analogy here, i am quoting republican connie mack doing that. so you know what he said. bob mcdonnell the very conservative governor of virginia has hinted at that same sentiment. he did it in a radio interview this week. >> i'm concerned about the whole idea of carrying papers and always have to be able to prove your citizenship. that brings up shades of some other regime that's were not particularly helpful to democracy. >> former arkansas governor and presidential candidate mike huckabee registered his diz pleasure with the new law as well. he did so, though, in the form of a bizarre theme park metaphor. he told "the dallas morning news," quote, what does concern me is that if it's not carried out and applied carefully you could end up in a situation where people are stopped who are absolute citizens. america's a lot like disney world. in that once you get a ticket, you're in.
you don't have to keep showing your ticket to keep riding the rides. that's the whole point of liberty. >> straddling the republican divide on this issue are people like senator john cornyn of texas, who is not exactly sticking up for the arizona law but says it's been misunderstood. quote, i don't think it's as onerous as it's been represented. actually, i don't think people misunderstood the arizona law. the more you know about the more surprised you are about just how onerous it is. but if you want a sense of just how uncokocomfortable the posit republicans have been put in by this arizona law, just watch this next clip. watch this. this is minority whip, poor minority whip eric cantor on abc yesterday. he's so desperate to not take a stand on the papers please law, either way, he filibusters the interview. >> are you in the jeb bush, marco rubio, karl rove camp, that this law, that jan brewer signed in arizona, goes too far,
is unenforceable or lots of questions are to be enforced, or are you in the mccain, kyl, brewer camp, in support of the law. >> i think that's a false choice. >> how is that false choice? >> because no one is going to accept the lawlessness. first and foremost we're a country of laws. now, are you asking whether i think america is the country of opportunity? absolutely. are we a country built on immigrants? absolutely. >> i'm asking you if you agree with marco rubio that the law goes too far. that's what i'm asking. >> listen. i can tell you this. i am for making sure that america remains a country that stands of freedom and opportunity for everyone. >> also puppies, i'm totally for puppies. are you asking me about puppies? i'm so propuppies. how dare you insinuate i'm not propuppies -- oh, that's not what you're asking? eric cantor is very sure he does not have to give a direct answer about the arizona immigration law because he really does not want to. the thing is, every time a
republican does give a direct answer about the papers please law in arizona, the divide within the republican party on this gets deeper and more public. and it looks like this problem is only going to get worse. both the problem faced by people who don't believe in presuming everyone is illegal unless they can prove otherwise, the problem of the bill itself, but also the problem for republicans who are going to have to now continue to fight each other in public over whether we should presume everyone's illegal unless they can prove otherwise. this is a big political problem. thinkprogress is reporting that legislation similar to the arizona papers please law may be brought up in at least seven other states besides arizona. and if scott mcinnis the front-runner in the colorado governor's race win that's race, can you add colorado to the list as well. as we noted last night, as a u.s. congressman in 2001 mr. mckin is, a, had a mustache, and b, argued favorably of racial
profiling. he promised he would pursue legislation in colorado similar to what arizona's got, which everyone outside of arizona who isn't a proponent of the bill admits is essentially a racial profiling bill. that bill has turned arizona into a civil rights per rye ya. that has turned arizona into a huge battle ground. that bill has also apparently cleaved the republican party right in two. now that the political can of worms labeled draconian immigration legislation has been opened by the great state of arizona, expect a long, bitter, intrarepublican battle on this issue. just in time for democrats to lead a charge, finally, for comprehensive federal immigration reform for the whole country. wow. stay tuned. politics is totally different for the whole rest of the year now. this is a big deal. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 i thought investment firms were there
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maxwell house custom-roasts each bean... for a full-flavored cup of coffee. so you can be good to the last drop. i think we need more cups, mom. "the new york times" today ran an op-ed by a lawyer who is taking credit for helping draft arizona's new anti-immigration law. he's a lawyer with the legal arm of a group called f.a.i.r., the federation for american immigration reform. in defending the arizona law against its critics, this lawyer, chris kobach notes this is not arizona's first brush with anti-immigration legislation. he notes a law in 2007 in
arizona that makes it illegal to, quote, knowingly employ unauthorized aliens. even before that in the summer of 2004 there was another fierce battle in arizona over an anti-immigration ballot initiative called proposition 200. both of arizona's republican senators, john mccain and jon kyl opposed prop 200, as did the democratic governor at the time, janet napolitano. on the national level, opposition was bipartisan from the very prolabor group, afl/cio to the pages of probusiness "wall street journal." this anti-immigration measure prop 200 was drafted by a group called protect arizona now. in order to get it on the ballot on election day you need to collect a lot of signatures, right? it is an expensive measure. the money for that expensive measure, the money for the signature drive was provided in large part by f.a.i.r., the same group taking credit for writing
the bill we've been calling the papers please in arizona. f.a.i.r. reportedly dumped $400,000 into protect arizona now for their signature gathering every time. the two groups held joint press conferences in arizona featuring officials from both organizations, f.a.i.r. gave practically minute by minute updates about how many thousands of signatures had been collected for prop 200. f.a.i.r. and protect arizona now were joined at the hip to get prop 200 on the ballot. then something happened. local newspapers in arizona started looking into protect arizona now. they found out that one of the top officials at that group helping to push this anti-immigration ballot initiative was a self-described ethnic separatist. her name is virginia abernethy. when contacted about her views, ms. abernathy said, quote, i'm in favor of separate advertise many. i know ethnic groups are more comfortable with their own kind. she then wrote a letter to the
washington times, quote, i'm an ethnic separatist. european-american, to be exact. that looks bad, right? to its credit, f.a.i.r. immediately distanced themselves from her. they blasted out a press release, quote, the views expressed by a ms. virginia abernathy are repug nant and divisive. f.a.i.r. and everyone f.a.i.r. represents denies and repudiates her repulsive separatist views. that's the important point here. being a proud white separatist is a view most people in the country are going to find repug nant. do being the savvy pr thing and distancing themselves from the person is how f.a.i.r. has built its fair image, seemingly moderate, seemingly middle of the road anti-immigration group. but beyond the press release, is there a reason virginia ab abernathy and f.a.i.r. were working so closely?
john tanton was writing stuff like this, quote, to govern is to pop late. will the present majority peaceably hand over its political power to a group that is simply more fertile? as whites see their power and control over their lives declining will they simply go quitely into the night or will they go with an explosion? tanton received more than 1 million inside funding from a group called the pioneer fund, that bank rolls all sorts of research about race and intelligence, essentially aiming at proving the racial superiority of white people. founding f.a.i.r., john tanton was also heading up u.s. english. when a series of mr. tanton's memos on racial issues were published by the arizona republic newspaper in the late 1980s, u.s. english sort of fell apart. many of the people associated
with u.s. english jumped ship. people like arnold schwarzenegger, walter cronkite and linda chavez. it asked questions like, what are the differences in educability between hispanics and asiatics? also, can home mow contraceptivus compete with home know progress -- what he was suggesting with those fake latin words is there are different human species, those who reproduce a lot and those who don't. which are you? john tanton's papers are archived at the university of michigan which has put written statements like this from him, quote, i've come to the point of view that for european american society and culture to persist requires a european-american majority and a clear one at that. whatever happened to old john tanton after he founded f.a.i.r. and everybody bugged out of his
u.s. english group because of these memos? f.a.i.r. kept him on the board of directors. he's there now. that's on their website today. f.a.i.r. likes to project a moderate image and the media gives them credit for having a moderate image. but why is that exactly? joining us now is dan stein, the president of f.a.i.r. mr. stein, i really appreciate you offering to be here with us tonight. thanks very much for your time. >> happy to be here. >> i said a lot there about your organization, let me ask you if i got any of the facts wrong about f.a.i.r. so far. >> well, i don't think you've said much about f.a.i.r. itself as an organization in the course of this thing, but i think the point of the reason why i thought it was important to come on was that you -- even though tonight have you repeated some of this stuff generated by the southern poverty law center, piecing together out of context snippets from third party people that are not directly associated with or even in that matter speaking directly for the organization is not a fair
representation of f.a.i.r. or this movement. and, you know, certainly in this day in age we would expect mainstream journalists like yourself to do independent research on their own and not just take talking points from discredited smear artists like those folks down in alabama. southern poverty law center really doesn't have credibility at all. f.a.i.r. certainly never -- >> hold it. hold t let me just -- >> you made some points that are not accurate. >> you can impune my research techniques all you want but if you want to talk about things i have said that are inaccurate tell me what they are. >> well, first of all, you've neglected to point out that for 30 years, which f.a.i.r. -- one of the reasons f.a.i.r., we're credible, we talk about the issue from its currency in national standpoint but also made a point of saying and we've vindicated that over 30 years that immigration policy should not discriminate on the basis of ethnicity, rate or any other
invid yes spaces and i think you've got a track record of thousands of television appearances, hundreds of congressional testimony, a virtd wall public record as long as your arm of this organization that would bear out those issues. >> let's talk about -- >> you know -- we're extremely fair minded organization. we certainly never had anything to do with virginia abernathy. i don't know where you got the idea we worked closely with her. we never have. >> on that point, sir, did you not give her organization hundreds of thousands of dollars for the prop 200 race? >> first of all we never gave that organization a dime and secondly, even if we were going to give them a dime we wouldn't have given them a dime with virginia abernathy associated with it. the problem is southern poverty law center has made about 75 factual allegations all of which are wrong about f.a.i.r. >> let's talk about the factual allegations you're not being interviewed by southern poverty law center, you're being intervufred by me. >> it was funded from the stewart mott foundation. john tanton, several other people involved in u.s.
population policy, dick lamb, sharon barns, people working with planned parenthood, others, sydney swinsroot, all got together said we need a responsible organization to ensure that immigration doesn't fuel too rapid population growth. there was a time when it was believed that population stabilization was in the national interest and there were democrats and republicans together on this, after the commission, people like father he hessber, the naacp to bring together a compromise. what's happening in this debate is there's a polarization taking place where somehow this idea that democrats don't favor any immigration enforcement and want the borders out of control and republicans or anybody who wants to see the laws enforced in this country is somehow a bad guy or a bigot. this is a very sensitive, very difficult policy issue. it's obviously very emotional, but if we're going to take this country down a bipartisan -- a partisan road on the immigration
policy debate, we're heading down a very treaterous road indeed. this is ultimately something about who we are and what we are as a people and what we've become over time. >> do you mind if i ask you a question? >> i'm right here. >> john tanton is still on your board of directors. he has argue for advancement of a european-american majority. he's warned white people not to seed pow tore other people owe. >> wait, wait, wait. >> this is in public papers. >> i don't think he's ever -- there's no public paper that says that. >> wait, hold on. >> where's the evidence of that? you made a statement -- what's the source of that about him publicly advocating a european-american union? >> the european-american majority is advocated is something that he advocated to another member of your board of directors, it's in his public paper that's are stored at university of michigan. >> you said he publicly abdicated that. >> yes. >> you said he -- >> it's in his public papers archived at the university of michigan. >> he put all of his private
papers, he put all of his private paper. >> at a library. >> at the university of michigan. >> yep. >> you're saying -- you're taking a private comment taken out of context and said he made a public comment. >> how about a difference in edgeability between hispanics and asia attics? >> you're saying it's a private document not in the context of f.a.i.r. and you're raising this issue 25 years later. >> yep. >> in order tore inflame a public debate. >> because he's on your board of directors. >> he's asking a question. >> right. is that an appropriate question to be asked? >> you're raising the issue in order to divide. >> no. >> hispanic-americans from other people. >> i have no interest in doing that. >> you are divisive, we are not, you are making this a racial and ethnic issue. we are not. >> everybody in the country ask trying to figure out in the arizona law is as racist as it seems. >> it's not racist.
>> this is the national debate that we're having. it is jermaine, it seec seems t wrote the bill -- >> you're tossing out stuff from 25 years ago that has no relevance about anything about somebody's comment in a private correspondence. john tanton, i will go to bat for any time but he's one person involved in this person -- >> he's the founder of your organization and on the board of directors. since your organization is taking credit for writing the law, it seems germane to me to examine whether or not your organization has a racist track record. so having john tanton on your board of directors -- >> i don't see -- none of that follows. >> what are the differences in edgeability of hispanics, we need a european-american majority, there's a conflict between having someone like that on your board of directors and trying to be seen as a responsible moderate organization. >> you're imputing things. >> he's on your board. >> the point is, this is not
ultimately fundamentally relevant to the policy debate that we're having now. nobody is talking about the question of whether or not the united states should maintain a majority european-american population. >> except the guy on your board of directors. >> the point is, everybody -- we have a big tent. people have lots of ideas, people entertain ideas. how can you -- how can you turn around and say -- henry ford founded the the ford foundation. he was the advocate of the protocols. does that mean la rozza is anti-semitic? this is absurd. >> you are the president of f.a.i.r. can i ask you about you? >> if you want to dig yourself into a hole. >> i'd be happy to. tucker carl son asked you to respond to this quote, it would be better to encourage the breeding of more intelligent people rather than less intelligent. he said that in the context -- >> tucker carl son -- >> expressing his --
>> rachel. >> let me finish the question and then you can answer. it works every night. i try it. trust me. your response to that was, yeah, so what? what is your problem with that? should we be subsidizing people with low i.q.s to have as many children as possible? was that a misquote? >> it was a misquote. tucker carlson has admitted they were twisted and misquotes. anyone who knows me knows i wouldn't take positions like that. that's absurd. >> in 2006 you hired a man named joseph turner to be f.a.i.r.'s western representative. he wrote on save our state's forums, i'll be damned if i'll watch my state turn into a third world cesspool. i consider bigotry and racism to be complimentary. i can make the argument that just because one believes in white separate advertise many that does not make him a racist.
did you know those things about him when you hired him to be your representative? >> he certainly never made that statement in the context of working for f.a.i.r. -- we work very hard and have worked hard with hundreds of people working for our organization to find people who are good, constructive, solid par tis pants in this debate. and i think this effort to smear not just f.a.i.r. but everybody on this issue will not move us forward. the reason it's not moving forward that you're so happy about is because immigration policy has been decided on a bipartisan basis. and the kind of invid yes partisan name calling and smearing going on here is not going to advance the national dialogue. people want solutions. that's why arizona passed this law. not name-calling and not shrill rhetoric. >> i'm not trying to be shrill and i'm not calling you any names, i'm sorry if it feels that way. >> if you want to ask me anything about me or f.a.i.r., ask me something about f.a.i.r.
has done in its capacity as an organization. >> okay. so f.a.i.r., that guy joseph turner was your western field representative. he took that job after rick oeltman was a field representative for f.a.i.r.? zble worked for f.a.i.r., yeah. >> he's linked to council of conservative citizens, we have a photo of him on a panel we can put up here. >> rachel, let me get this right. >> if you go to this website right now, here's what you'll find. there's a question at the end of this. there's a write up on african people and intelligence -- we have the picture of the website here, council on conservative citizens. erectus walks among us, it's a mockup between a black person and an ape. quote, sheriff arpaio debates the nappy headed race hustler. he was on your payroll, was that
also a mistake? or was that -- >> first of all, i think you're trying to raise divisive and inflammatory issues here. >> i'm trying to get to the bottom of what f.a.i.r. is. i'm not talking about the southern poverty law center, these are facts you can address independent of where you think i've sourced them from. is it true? >> you're not stating any facts that are accurate. if rick altman 20 years ago went to a panel on the ccc to talk about immigration policy, how can you impute to f.a.i.r. or rick altman the position of that organization, which trent lott and other senior politicians were senior members of? this is ahistorical. you're confusing facts, jumbling things up, trying to create something that's not there. >> were you the adviser and editorial adviser to a magazine called "the social contract" for a long time? >> yeah. >> "social contract" also set up by john tanton? yes. i'll say yes. the editor of the social contract is a man named wayne
luten. he's also a regular contributor toy ajournal called "american renaissance" a journal that publishes stuff like this, blacks and white'ses are different. when blacks are left to their own devices, any kind of civil iceation disappears. wayne luten is currently the editor of "the social contract." you're an adviser to it, it's a john tanton joint -- are you worried about wayne luten spoiling your image as a moderate nonracist organization? >> absolutely not. first of all, it has nothing to do with f.a.i.r. it's not a position i would ever agree with or anybody associated with f.a.i.r. but in the end -- and i'm not an adviser on the social contract anymore. >> but you were. >> are you somehow suggesting that somehow every political position that appears in a magazine if you're an editorial adviser on, this is impooulted to you? this is mccarthyism, guilt by association. groups never respond to their own credibility, they turn around and make these smear
campaigns without any accountability to anybody. >> this is not an interview with the southern law poverty center. if anything you think i said was not based in fact, i'll have you back to talk about. >> i'm saying you're -- you're asking me a fact. what i'm telling you is. >> you're saying -- you're im y implying that i am the southern poverty law center. i'm rachel maddow. this is msnbc. i'm bringing you facts i've researched. if you can't criticize them, don't criticize me for asking about them. rebut them if can. >> the answer is no. >> dan stein, i wish this could have been a more civil discussion. >> are we going to talk about the bill? >> i wanted to talk about f.a.i.r. and you told me pretty much what i need to know. >> this is an important issue and you're not giving me a chance to talk about anything of substance. >> well, mr. stein i'm sorry that you feel it wasn't
substantive. i think we covered a lot of important. >> i think you're wasting people's time. >> i'd be happy to have you back to waste some more. >> i'd be happy to. >> we'll be right back. ♪ (laughing through computer) good night, buddy. good morning, dad. (announcer) oreo. milk's favorite cookie. in this. one day, i'll park this in a spot reserved for me. it's got 26,000 miles on it now, but i'm gonna take it to a thousand million. [ male announcer ] when you own a certified pre-owned mercedes-benz, chances are they'll own it one day, too. which is why it undergoes such a rigorous inspection to meet our uncompromising standards. one day, i'm gonna drive this to vegas. [ male announcer ] hurry in to your authorized mercedes-benz dealer for 1.99% financing
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right after president obama signed health reform legislation, you might remember the new conservative attorney general of virginia had his staff race to a federal courthouse to sue the federal government over that legislation. after virginians protested maybe that was a waste of taxpayer money, ken cuccinelli said this
lawsuit's only going to cost the state $350. it will only cost the filing fee. the state pay roll attorney time, that's free, or something. well, the total cost of $350 may seem unbelievably low, the lawsuit appears to be quite a lot to mr. cuccinelli. look what came through our fax machine today. quote, dear blank, i urge you to sign and rern the enclosed there's something you and i can do to stop this ladies and gentlemen slags in its tracks. what can you and i do to help ken cuccinelli stop obama care in its tracks? quote, ignoring are the outcry from opposition from millions of americans, they got what they wanted and passed the bill into law. i will not sit on the side lines and allow the constitution to be violated and i have filed suit to have the law ruled unconstitutional. he's already taken care of that
$350 quick sodic lawsuit thing. what's left for us to do? here it s quote. please join side by side with me by immediately signing the enclosed pledge of support to challenge obama care and returning it to me today along with your most generous contribution of $2550, $100, $250 or more to cuccinelli for attorney general. send money now and lots of it. i'm using the entire legal apparatus of the state of virginia to bring a stunt of a lawsuit whose real cost i won't reveal but will help me in my political career. join together, everyone. quote, i'm reaching out to supporters across the commonwealth to join with me today. the bill is not merely a bill that adversely affects virginia, rather it avenues every single citizen of all 50 states. the bottom line is this, if we can prove this is unconstitutional, and you millions of virginians and americans will not have to worry about blah, blah, blah, blah,
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a month after president obama lifted the decades old moratorium on exploratory offshore oil drilling, an off shore oil leak oozes 200,000 gallons a day of raw crude, five times worse than what was originally thought. it threatens to devastate louisiana's environmentally-fragile coast. >> secretary napolitano announced it incident is of national significance and the department of interior will send s.w.a.t. teams to the gulf to inspect all platforms and rigs. while bp is ultimately responsible for funding the cost of response and cleanup operations, my administration will continue to use every single available resource at our disposal, including potentially the department of defense to address the incident. >> bp has in fact already asked the department of defense for help, specifically with underwater equipment. there's also now a third leak
point from the blown-out well nearly a mile under water. so far, bp's efforts to stop the leak using robots has failed. they're now suggesting technologies like a giant dome to cap the leak site and chemicals that could break up the oil under water. those technologies never before used in water this deep. while the coast guard did report some success with a controlled burn of surface oil yesterday, it's not enough. this massive oil slick has now started coming ashore. at the mouth of the mississippi river in louisiana as of tonight. joining us now is michael bruin, executive director of the sear are a club, thanks very much for your time. >> thanks for having me on. >> put this into context for us. how bad an oil spill is this one in the gulf, given other spills that we understand? >> well, first, if you're one of the 11 families of the worker who's are missing, it's devastating, if you're a member of the fishing industry in the gulf, it's devastating to your
livelihoods. and, you know, of course the impact on wildlife is extreme. it will take decades, even if the cleanup is successful, it will take decades to recover from this. so it's a great tragedy. >> the administration implied today they're going to take this spill into consideration when figuring out the details of their expansion of offshore drilling. do you believe that any new offshore drilling carries this inherent risk of environmental disaster? >> of course. of course. even the mineral mining service a year ago, a couple years ago under the bush administration said that we should expect a major oil spill from offshore oil drilling every year. arguably, not one this large, but what we know is that drilling for oil is a very dirty, we now know it's deadly and it's certainly an extremely dangerous business. when you compare that to investments in clean energy, the choice becomes clear, we should not be expanding offshore drilling we should be starting
to minimize it. >> let me ask you about one specific thing about this that bothers me. the deep water horizon rig, this rig that caught fire and sunk, one of the most technologically advanced in the world, if not the most advanced deep water rig in the world. >> right. >> but even as drilling technology has advanced so we can do it in places we couldn't do it before, it doesn't seem like we bothered to make sure we knew how to clean up in these places if we needed to. am i being naive to think that the regulatory process, the approval process should link those two things? that you shouldn't be approved to drill deeper than you know how to clean up? >> of course. to put it another way, we've all heard about the need to separate church and state, we need to separate oil and state. the reality is we just don't have effective organization over the industry. in the gulf, alaska, really anywhere in the world. we shouldn't be expecting the oil industry to police itself and the mms, the coast guard lack the adequate resources and
the capacity to effectively manage the industry. so whether we're talking about this one particular rig or whether we're talking about the impact of the industry more systemically, there are big problems that need to be resolved. >> michael brune, executive director of the sierra club, thank you very much for joining us you were insight. >> thanks for having me on. >> you've seen him shirtless on a horse, on a horse shirtless. you'll see him with a polar bear. we'll keep whether or not he's wearing a shirt this time a surprise. vladimir putin's latest amazing photo-op. flavors, or preservatives. new purefitness... from crystal light. a pure way to water your body.
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because we all need a little terrifying cuddle now and then. we turn now to our big arctic outreach correspondent, mr. kent jones. >> hi, rachel. once again, the great and fearless vladimir putin, schools the entire west in the manly, masculine art of the self-serving photo-op. this time, he's got a bear with him. >> reporter: ever since teddy roosevelt created the template, our leaders have taken great pains to display themselves as
athletic, strong, testeroen-y macho guys. have americans learned nothing from vladimir putin? behold, vlad, judo master, horseman, fisherman, pectacular hero. in his latest hero action role, he and scientists trek way up north so he can lay a concerned hand on this very confused, very tranquilized polar bears. which means sense because putin and polar bears are a natural fit. both belong to a species that will probably be gone in 20 years. he helped track the bear with a tracking device. he decided to leave his shirt on.
bold choice. you've got to admit, he controls his message brilliantly. even though putin called the bear the master of the arctic. at the photo-op, he made it clear he is the master of the master of the arctic. and what about the hat, huh? it's cool, yeah? that's how it's done, yankee politicians. drug them and then pet them. >> so wrong in so many ways. thank you very much, kent. appreciate that. coming up on "countdown", keith is joined by comedian paul rodriguez who has just canceled a gig in arizona. [ male announcer ] when you buy a car,
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subject of the interview on the show tonight, we posted background on our website tonight. they get represented in the mainstream media as a mainstream group. i think our reporting shows that moderate reputation to be undeserved. we will see you again tomorrow night. "countdown" with keith olbermann starts right now. have a good night. which of these stories will you be talking about tomorrow? the cry gets louder. >> arizona boycott. arizona boycott. >> the cry in chicago, the symbols, the arizona diamondbacks, the only team without a prominent hispanic player. the cry in phoenix where the cry at the state capitol, where governor brewer would not meet with the colombian singer shakira, in washington, where democratic senators outline security and immigration reform.
and where the house minority leader says now is the time to do nothing. our special guest, senator bob menendez of new jersey and comedian and advocate paul rodriguez. the storm in the tea cup, scalded by the tea party, the republican governor of florida who polls as well as anyone goes independent. >> it's your decision. it's not one club's decision or another. or even a club within that club. >> the new crisis in the gulf. with the oil slick nearing louisiana, how's that drill, baby, drill crap working for you? >> bp is ultimately responsible for funding the cost of response and cleanup operations. worsts. ratings drop 19% but fox is still crowing, smith, bill, greta, isn't somebody missing? and speaking of that prophecy, dave foley, the kids in the hall, 1994.